Rathbones’ funds up 14% as unit trust flows boom

Rathbone Brothers revealed a “robust” set of trading numbers on Thursday with funds under management up 14.3% on the year previously.

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Total funds under management across the group stood at £39.1bn at the end of last year, up on the £34.2bn reported in December 2016, with net inflows for the year rising from £1.7bn to £2.1bn.

The investment management arm of the business grew its funds under management by 11.9% from £30.2bn reported in 2016, to some £33.8bn on 31 December last year.

Unit trusts continued to be popular with clients with net inflows in the fourth quarter last year up 117% compared with Q4 2016, rising from £125m to £272m.

It follows a successful Q3 for the firm’s unit trusts where it took a record £342m, more than double the inflows in the same period in 2016.

Net inflows for investment management in Q4 2017 were £290m, almost matching the inflows for the same period in 2016 (£292m).

In the trading statement, Rathbones said: “Growth in funds under management was robust, reflecting both favourable investment markets and continued growth in the business.”

Following the release of its Q3 trading numbers last year, Rathbones chief executive Phillip Howell confirmed the firm was looking at further acquisitions despite its failed attempt to merge with Smith & Williamson last year.

Full annual results for the group will be published on 22 February 2018.

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